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On World’s Children Day, Israel’s UN ambassador says UN cares for wellbeing of all children – unless they are Israeli

Hundreds of Israelis express their outrage outside UNICEF offices in Tel Aviv and NY

Demonstrators call for the release of Israelis held captive by Hamas terrorists in Gaza, outside the UNICEF headquarters in New York, November 20, 2023. (Photo: Screenshot)

The United Nations marked the World Children’s Day on Monday with very little attention, if any, given to 38 Israeli babies, toddlers and youth under the age of 18 who were kidnapped by Hamas terrorists on Oct. 7. They have been held hostage in the Gaza Strip by the Hamas terror organization for 45 days now. 

Some children were abducted from their homes with their parents. Others saw at least one of their parents or siblings murdered in front of their eyes. One baby was reportedly born in captivity to a 35-year-old Thai worker named Nutthawaree Munkan.  

The Israeli Foreign Ministry and the IDF’s official accounts on X, published photos of the abducted children.

Nonetheless, on the occasion that commemorates the Declaration of the Rights of the Child by the United Nations General Assembly on Nov. 20, 1959, UNICEF’s Executive Director Catherine Russell failed to mention the abducted children in her annual statement

UNICEF has also disregarded the Israeli hostage children online, even though it posted a video of Palestinian children in Gaza sharing their wishes amidst the ongoing escalation of hostilities.

Outside the UNICEF offices in New York, hundreds of Israel-supporters, and some families whose loved ones were abducted by Hamas, demonstrated to raise awareness to the hostage children cause. 

Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan said on Monday that on this day, the UN recognizes “the wellbeing of all children, unless they are Israeli.”

“To the UN, our hostages have become a footnote. Today, of all days, the pain hurts so much harder,” he continued. “How can it be that this organization and its bodies have not united even once, to condemn Hamas’ brutal atrocities?  

On Monday, Erdan hosted the largest screening to date of the film of Hamas atrocities, with over 300 ambassadors, diplomats, senior UN officials and Jewish leaders in attendance.

In his speech to the crowd, the ambassador noted that UNRWA schools that educate Palestinian children with UN funding, serve as platforms that glorify terror and violence. 

Meanwhile, another large protest took place in front of UNICEF’s branch in Tel Aviv. Pictures of the abducted children were projected on its building, including an image of 10-month-old Kfir, who was abducted into Gaza with his mother and 4-year-old brother Ariel from Kibbutz Nir Oz. 

Hadas Calderon, the mother of two abducted children, Erez and Sahar, delivered remarks at the rally and expressed outrage at the United Nations. 

Families of the Israelis held captive by Hamas terrorists in Gaza attend a rally calling for the release of kidnapped children, outside the UNICEF headquarters in Tel Aviv, November 20, 2023. (Photo: Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

“UNICEF, wake up!” she called, while ringing a bell. 

“If today is about children’s rights, where are my children’s rights?” she asked, according to Israeli news outlets.

“How is it possible that in the face of this horror, the world is silent? Organizations like UNICEF are silent. Have you forgotten your role?”

Vered Windman, CEO of Israel’s National Council for the Child, urged: “The return of the kidnapped children should not only be a matter for their families, nor only for the citizens of Israel – it should be an international matter.” 

The protest was interrupted by a barrage of rockets that was fired towards central Israel, triggering a population of about 2 million residents to run to safety shelters. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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